Business owners often worry about limited employee productivity and how to improve it. Threats and criticism won’t work to improve employee productivity. Employees work harder and more efficiently if they are happy with their work environment and have the tools needed to do their jobs. Employees that are hired must be qualified for the job, be properly trained, and given the tools required to be productive. When productivity is not what it should be, it is time to find out what the causes are and correct them.
Communication is Everything
The modern workplace runs on communication. If there is inadequate communication, it will hurt productivity. Finding the right employee communication software can improve employee productivity and morale. The modern workforce is largely made up of Millennials who like to work in teams and have ongoing communication with their managers and fellow workers. This communication should include the most up-to-date communication technologies.
Employees might spend several hours a day looking for information needed to do their projects. They need to find important documents or information quickly and with a minimum of frustration. Inter-office communication is also important to employees. Project instructions and goals should be readily available. Workplace transparency is important.
Mobile apps and other communication tools keep employees engaged and on the job with higher satisfaction rates. Employees like information at their fingertips when they need it. Lack of communication will cause employee dissatisfaction and stress. They might not know what is expected of them and feel insecure. Employers who are clear about each person’s job responsibilities and keep an open line of communication have more engaged employees.
Some experts advise having special times for emails to management. Workers know that, if they email during a certain block of time, they will get a prompt answer. Also, refrain from emailing employees in the evening or on weekends when they can’t solve the problem and may feel stressed by the e-mail.
Hire the Right People and Train them Well
Hire people who have the basic skills and backgrounds for the job and then train them with on-the-job training to fill any knowledge or skill gaps. Employees who do not have the skills or training for a job can not perform well and will get discouraged. Not knowing what to do or how to do it will cause employees to feel lost, frustrated, and confused. Employees with insufficient training can not be as productive as well-trained employees.
The employer needs to know employees and determine what their skill gaps are and offer them on-the-job training to fill those gaps. Encouraging continuous learning is another way to improve employee skill levels. Be willing to answer employee questions and welcome their questions as a positive training opportunity to improve performance..
Tools and Equipment Must be There and They Must Work.
No one likes working in an environment where they don’t have the tools necessary to work efficiently. Old printers or computers that are constantly breaking down or a lack of basic work supplies can lead to lost work time and frustration. Each employee should have the work setup and equipment they need to perform at their best level.
Computers and software run offices and most workplaces now, so have the newest versions of computers and software. Make sure employees don’t have to waste time on slow boot ups or limited internet access. Have computer security to protect everyone’s computers and data from hackers and other security threats like ransom wear.
Meetings, Meetings, Meetings
No one really likes meetings, so they should be kept to a minimum, and meetings should be productive. Too many meetings can be a distraction that hinders productivity. Being pulled away from a project that is going well to attend a weekly or daily meeting might be more frustrating than productive. Limit the number of meetings during the workday when employees are trying to get assignments or projects done. Make meetings more meaningful.
Stressed Out Employees Can’t Do their Best Work
Both work and personal stress can be productivity killers. Stressed-out employees miss more days of work and lose their work focus. Employees who are suffering stress should be supported with one-on-one meetings and other tools that help them recover. Find out what is causing the stress and find ways to reduce that stress. Encourage employee self-care with health insurance plans and company-paid courses on stress relief and time management.
Additional Ways To Improve Employee Productivity
Once the five main reasons for a lack of productivity are solved, there are more ways to improve the workplace and increase productivity. Creating a team or family-like atmosphere where everyone knows they are appreciated and that the business owner has their backs and will support them is important. Developing loyalty and team spirit can improve productivity. Other aspects of this are knowing about employees and their lives outside of work and being willing to work with them when problems happen.
Think about offering employee incentives for jobs done well or projects completed on time. Celebrate company victories, even the small ones, acknowledging the employee contributions. Treat all employees equally, with no favorites, so everyone feels like a valued part of a team.
Provide a comfortable, attractive workplace with plenty of natural light and some living plants. Paint the walls colors other than white. Do a little research into what colors help employees work better and feel better. Blue may boost creativity, while green may help motivate employees. Plan the spaces for each employee so they are not crowded. A modern workplace should have spaces designed for teamwork as well as individual workstations with an adequate amount of privacy.
Desks and office chairs should offer comfort and a more-efficient work atmosphere. There should be enough storage so the work area does not get cluttered. Control noise where possible with improved acoustics.
Involving the company employees in the planning of an office or work area renovation will result in happier, more productive employees. Employee ideas and requests must be balanced with practicality and a realistic budget. It is worth the expense and effort to provide a comfortable, motivational work environment.